One of the greatest reading pleasures I’ve had with my preschoolers is reading aloud chapter books with them. Now, I know you might be thinking, “Why would you read a chapter book with a young child?” Let me show you how and why we should be reading chapter books with our preschoolers. Here are six tips for reading chapter books with preschoolers.
6 Tips for Reading Chapter Books with Preschoolers
Getting hooked on a great chapter book builds a desire and thirst for reading. What parent doesn’t want their child to be thirsty for books? Starting this read-aloud habit early is key.
Last week, we read a few chapters in the Boxcar Children and my son didn’t want to stop. We ended up reading the entire book in one day. Snuggled up on the couch together, I’d finish one chapter and he would quickly say, “Keep going!” Generally though, we read a chapter a night while I lay in bed with him.
Reading and connecting over books is a wonderful bonding experience. It’s a time for sharing and drifting into books together, experiencing the author’s words, and combining it with our imaginations. It’s a time when I can share favorite chapter books from my childhood or pair a book that I know they will just love.
Reading aloud is a wonderful way to help kids expand their vocabulary. Book language is much more complex than their everyday speaking language. Chapter book reading allows us to use another set of vocabulary words to describe how characters change throughout a book.
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Now we know why it’s such a great idea to read chapter books to preschoolers (if they are ready). Let’s set you up for some success with more tips.
Matching chapter books TO young readers is vital. There are some tips and tricks for matching the right chapter book with a young child. First and foremost, we have to evaluate the content. Many chapter books are intended for an older audience. So, previewing books beforehand for mature content or conversations your child might not be ready for is important.
Secondly, not all chapter books lend themselves to a great read-aloud experience. Some are better read silently to yourself.
New listeners need books that:
Here are a few good chapter books to read to preschoolers to get you started.——>First Chapter Book Read-Alouds
Most importantly, if the book isn’t working for you or your child it is perfectly fine to abandon it. Maybe it’s just not a good book as a read-aloud. Maybe your child just isn’t ready for it. Or, maybe neither of you are into it. Wait a few weeks and try again. Or, try a different book. Sometimes a book that didn’t work as read-aloud for us ends up being a great audiobook choice instead. Here are some of our favorite audiobooks for young children.——>Audiobooks for Young Children
My hope is that my kids will enjoy that same pleasure of wanting to grab a book before bed and snuggling in to see what will happen next to their favorite characters.
What chapter books have you enjoyed with your young child?
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